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October 4, 2012 2:25 AM   Subscribe


 
Pronunciation.
posted by rmmcclay at 2:41 AM on October 4, 2012 [5 favorites]


I'll still never be able to pronounce "Auchentoshan" properly.
posted by j03 at 2:42 AM on October 4, 2012


Works like a depth charge. Pow.

Pronunciation.
rmmcclay's Guide to English Orthography.
posted by pracowity at 2:43 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


That scotch is something a child would select. It has a ship on the bottle, doesn't it?
posted by Yowser at 2:44 AM on October 4, 2012 [4 favorites]


I am disappoint. Why isn't he getting more and more drunk, giving increasingly hilarious observations on each type?
posted by catch as catch can at 2:46 AM on October 4, 2012 [6 favorites]


Yowser: which one?
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:46 AM on October 4, 2012


So that's how you pronounce Highland Park. You live and learn, eh?
posted by MuffinMan at 2:53 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I was hoping for more slurring and violence as they progressed.
posted by Molesome at 2:57 AM on October 4, 2012


Laphroaig
Glenfiddich
Bruichladdich
posted by robcorr at 3:05 AM on October 4, 2012 [4 favorites]


Pronunciation.

Not after forty Scotches.
posted by robcorr at 3:09 AM on October 4, 2012


That scotch is something a child would select. It has a ship on the bottle, doesn't it?

Old Pulteney?
posted by biffa at 3:31 AM on October 4, 2012


He's not wrong about Lagavulin. The favoured whisky of Jack Donaghy, Ron Swanson, and now Brian Cox, and therefore awesome.
posted by das1969 at 3:31 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Laphroaig is better.

But it would be only polite to drink the Lagavulin, unless like a friend of mine you think it tastes like poster paint.
posted by MartinWisse at 3:36 AM on October 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


People arguing over Lagavulin and Laphroaig clearly haven't tried Bruichladdich. Or Nikka Yoichi, which I notice he didn't attempt.

And I note with pride the fact that I didn't have to look up the spelling of any of those.
posted by grajohnt at 3:44 AM on October 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


When I was on Islay (which eveyone there pronounced 'eye-lah') Caol Ila was universally pronounced 'cull ee-lah' and not like the island itself (and the linked video).
posted by Dysk at 3:45 AM on October 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


Laphroaig Quarter Cask is possibly the most flavour-packed thing I've ever tasted. One tiny shot is enough to stink out most of the house. And now I want some.
posted by pipeski at 4:07 AM on October 4, 2012


Oh why did you have to post this at Tipple O'Clock...

I shall pour a dram of Laphroaig immediately.
FOR EDUCATION!
posted by Mezentian at 4:08 AM on October 4, 2012


Lay-phroig
posted by sammyo at 4:17 AM on October 4, 2012


Why are we trusting a Dundonian when it comes to pronunciation? They can't even say 'pie' properly.
posted by liquidindian at 4:22 AM on October 4, 2012 [10 favorites]


If you ever need to out-snob a group of scotch drinkers ask for Laphroaig, surprisingly few have heard of it. Well not serious aficionados but they will be impressed by your taste.
posted by sammyo at 4:23 AM on October 4, 2012


More like Le Frog.
posted by MartinWisse at 4:24 AM on October 4, 2012


For relaxing times, make it Suntory time.
posted by charlie don't surf at 4:26 AM on October 4, 2012 [10 favorites]


This is also a useful guide,, especially if you can't play movies. Not that I've ever crammed Scotch pronunciations or anything.
posted by jetlagaddict at 4:46 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


People arguing over Lagavulin and Laphroaig clearly haven't tried Bruichladdich.

Oh yes we have. We like it, too, but we prefer the tarry, peaty POW of those bigger, meaner Islays.

Laphroaig Quarter Cask and Ardbeg Uigeadail are better than Lagavulin. Yes, they are.
posted by Decani at 4:52 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I agree that Bruichladdich is the tiny shit bag of Islay ash; Laphroaig QC is delicious but Ardbeg Uigeadail is horribly overrated, I really struggle to taste how it got put up s best whisky in the world when it came out, I would genuinely take the standard 10 year Ardbeg over it. The Lagavulin 16 is the king of scotch complexity though, and you are out of your box there.
posted by biffa at 4:58 AM on October 4, 2012


My instructor in bartending school introduced me to Laphroaig some 40 years ago. You can imagine how rare it (or any single malt) was in Texas at the time. He had a standing order with the largest distributer in Austin to save him a few bottles out of any shipment that might arrive. I sampled his rare elixir but never really became a fan...
posted by jim in austin at 5:02 AM on October 4, 2012


For relaxing times, make it Suntory time.

Suntory's main whisky is the Yamazaki, and it's not bad.
posted by postcommunism at 5:15 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure why it bothers me so much that he calls Lagavulin "The Cognac of Scotches", but it feels somewhat akin to calling Ulysses "The Cadillac of Novels".
posted by Greg Nog at 5:18 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Not a Laphroaig person myself. Tried a very rare Bruichladdich at the distillery that was barrelled in Sauterne barrels and it was pretty special. They don't sell that particular one.

If you like big and peaty Islays, you might want to try Kilchoman [pronounced Kill-homan]. It's the young pretender on Islay.

I'm a recent convert to Japanese whiskies though - I love Yamazaki's 10yo, although I also tried Hakushu's 18yo in a whisky bar in Kyoto and it was sublime. I'm yet to try my Hibiki 21yo, which I picked up for a bit of a steal in duty free on the way home.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:20 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


People arguing over Lagavulin and Laphroaig clearly haven't tried Bruichladdich.
...
Oh yes we have. We like it, too, but we prefer the tarry, peaty POW of those bigger, meaner Islays.


Obligatory mention of Bruichladdich's Port Charlotte series, which is wonderfully peaty, and which contained the PC5, maybe my favorite whisky I've had.
posted by Greg Nog at 5:20 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Just hearing the word Lagavulin makes me smile. I probably don't have more than one Scotch a year on average but when I do, it's a Lagavulin.
posted by tommasz at 5:21 AM on October 4, 2012


No love for Corryvreckan?
posted by fixedgear at 5:23 AM on October 4, 2012


Too much whirling of the glass needed for the full effect.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:27 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Yo, Brian Cox must have been hammered after shooting this.
posted by nathancaswell at 5:31 AM on October 4, 2012


I am disappoint. Why isn't he getting more and more drunk, giving increasingly hilarious observations on each type?
That's Orson Welles. And wine.

Also, was disappointed that it was the actor, not the physicist.

But at least I know now that I was adding an extra syllable to Bunnahabhain.
posted by PapaLobo at 5:32 AM on October 4, 2012


Damnit it's 8:40 in the morning I can't be craving rich, peaty scotch right now.
posted by The Whelk at 5:42 AM on October 4, 2012


Brian Cox's Guide to Scotch Pronounciation

This is, I hope, bound to insense my fellow Scots. "Scotch" is what you drink. We are referred to either as "Scots" or as "Scottish". When we get a bit irritated by things like that, we can be just a bit...er....oh.....unreasonable. Take it away, Malcolm...
posted by MajorDundee at 5:44 AM on October 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


This perfect Whisky sampler gift contains a drink called Peat Monster which has been described as friends who have had it as being like "a forest fire" or "what bog mummies taste like."

It is delicious.
posted by The Whelk at 5:46 AM on October 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


Naturally, I should have actually opened the link before firing from the hip. But, hey, enjoy Malcolm's tirades anyway!
posted by MajorDundee at 5:49 AM on October 4, 2012


I agree that Bruichladdich is the tiny shit bag of Islay ash

Their tour was the best - very interesting, funny, and generous pours at the end; the tour at Caol Ila (and nthing that the people giving the tour did not say it anything like Brian Cox does - cull-eel-ah is closest) was nice but odd since they said no photography was allowed. It looks pretty much like every other distillery on the island, and it's a certainty that distillers from those other distilleries have toured (or worked at) the Caol Ila facility. Still, got a wicked nice scarf at their gift shop.

And yeah, it's not even 6 am and I want some nice peaty whisky now.
posted by rtha at 5:52 AM on October 4, 2012


I think he missed one. At the Glen Garioch distillery, I was told to pronounce it like "Glen Geerie" -- no voiceless velar fricative necessary.

Of course, my memory of that tour is a bit hazy. I remember waiting for hours for the return bus to Aberdeen to no avail, till I realized I was standing on the wrong side of the road.
posted by Stig at 5:58 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


This thread is really making me nostalgic for distillery tours, and making me wish I could still afford to drink scotch at all, nevermind single malts...

(Also Kilchoman has a slight sorta gutteral thing going on after the L - it's not straight-up 'kill-ho-man'. I can also vouch for it being delicious at 5, 4, and 1.5 years, and coppery and foul as raw spirit, as I assume most whiskies are.)
posted by Dysk at 6:00 AM on October 4, 2012


Incidently, for those who like Caol Ila, Emelisse's White Label Imperial Russian Stout aged in Caol Ila whisky barrels: the bees knees.

(Other whisky barrel aged beers are available.)

Disappointing to see no Scapa in these videos; that and Auschentosan were the first whiskys I learned to drink
posted by MartinWisse at 6:04 AM on October 4, 2012


Was expecting the other Brian Cox (though if I stop to plug one part of my headgoo into another I realise instantaneously that Brian Cox 'B' is not Scottish.) It is in this way that I was amazed not to find an enthusiastic ex-Cern researcher enthusing about one of the wonders of the universe. Not disappointed or anything, just surprised to see Brian Cox 'A'. I have a tiny bottle of Lagavulin 16 which i have decanted a couple of sips from to help me over the shock.
posted by aesop at 6:05 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


A recent relaxation in UK Custom and Excise rules means that some odd things are happening - like a Welsh whisky (tried it, not bad, npt very characterful) and even (after a break of nearly 100 years since the last lot) three English whisky distillers.

Which is fine and interesting and all, and something to contemplate as you sip your Lagavulin, much as you might contemplate modest country churches while praying in Chartres Cathedral.

I do have a lot of time for Te Bheag (pron. Chey Vek), which is an unfiltered blend from Skye. It's a jaunty, high-spirited mongrel puppy of a thing that doesn't have a ferocious bark but is endlessly entertaining and has bits of all sorts of breeds in there.
posted by Devonian at 6:06 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


'Scotch pronunciation'; how to pronounce scotch (names). Not Scottish pronunciation; pronunciation from Scotland, or Scots pronunciation: pronunciation of Scot's dialect.

Alternative scots; Translating for the neds.

And you're all wrong. Skye malts are uncouth and one trick ponies. Talisker is the only West coast malt worth exploring.
posted by BadMiker at 6:09 AM on October 4, 2012


Don't listen to these people! All the Islays are now out of fashion! Don't drink them! Have a Highland something or other! Over there! Go! Go!

(Cradles Caol Ila) There, there, Darling. We're alone now.
posted by whuppy at 6:10 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


My (very) local distillery is Abhainn Dearg in the Outer Hebrides. I'll send a miniature of their 3 yo stuff to the first person to post a video link of them pronouncing it correctly!
posted by veryape at 6:16 AM on October 4, 2012


This sort of thing is exactly why I wish I were running a small distillery. I'd name my product something like "Five" and then insist it is pronounced "Canada".
posted by aramaic at 6:31 AM on October 4, 2012 [5 favorites]


Abhainn Dearg, (pronounced Aveen Jarræk)

Someone is pulling my leg...
posted by jim in austin at 6:53 AM on October 4, 2012


Aveen Jarræk when the walls fell.
posted by zerbinetta at 7:04 AM on October 4, 2012 [4 favorites]


I usually recommend Bunnahabhain to people who want to try scotch and also drink it myself. It's a nice complex taste but not too scary-strong for people used to your Jamesons and what-not.
posted by Authorized User at 7:06 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


To my ear, Cox has a #3 Scottish accent.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 7:36 AM on October 4, 2012


sammyo: "Lay-phroig"

Maybe in that there America. It's La-phroig over here.
posted by Happy Dave at 7:45 AM on October 4, 2012


MajorDundee: "Brian Cox's Guide to Scotch Pronounciation

This is, I hope, bound to insense my fellow Scots. "Scotch" is what you drink. We are referred to either as "Scots" or as "Scottish". When we get a bit irritated by things like that, we can be just a bit...er....oh.....unreasonable. Take it away, Malcolm...
"

Did you watch the video? He's discussing the proper pronunciation of Scotch brands, not Scots or Scottish pronunciation in general.

But yes, I did barge into the thread ready to make the exact same point, so it does tend to get the blood up. Scotch is a name for a drink, adhesive tape over in the US and a type of pie.
posted by Happy Dave at 7:48 AM on October 4, 2012


Leap Frog
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:53 AM on October 4, 2012


aesop - Was expecting the other Brian Cox

Yeah, I was all settled in for some "skinny, enthusiastic scientist gets drunk on camera" action. Now that I think about it, I would love to see both Brians Cox sit down over a bottle of good scotch and talk scotch, science and acting.
posted by jason_steakums at 8:28 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


My friends and I used to joke about Té Bheag (actually pronounced something like "Chay Vek") being the Whisky that was upfront about what would eventually happen to you by the end of the night.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:37 AM on October 4, 2012


But yes, I did barge into the thread ready to make the exact same point

Ambiguity is a hell of a thing.

Were I smarter, I'd have titled this something like "Scots Scottish Scotch argot."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:41 AM on October 4, 2012


Aveen Jarræk when the walls fell.

Bruichladdich, his arms wide.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 8:46 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


It's nice to see so much enjoyment coming from my ancestral homeland of Islay.

I might be a little prouder had any of the Islay distilleries been founded before the island was "improved" by the forcible removal of my ancestors, the burning of their homes, the censure of their language and culture...but, hey.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:52 AM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


I would love to see both Brians Cox sit down over a bottle of good scotch and talk scotch, science and acting.

Holy shit, this must happen! OK, ok, ok, ok, breathe. Right. OK. Breathe. OK. Let me just. I'm just.

OK.

So. Anyone know the contact info for them?
posted by aramaic at 9:20 AM on October 4, 2012


Familiar with Cardhu and its many products, as I took the tour.

After that, it all became a blur when I walked into a pub and asked the barman and the locals what was the best. A big taste-testing followed, ending with a man named Jim giving me his favorite football cap.
posted by Marie Mon Dieu at 9:45 AM on October 4, 2012


> When I was on Islay (which eveyone there pronounced 'eye-lah') Caol Ila was universally pronounced 'cull ee-lah' and not like the island itself (and the linked video).

> At the Glen Garioch distillery, I was told to pronounce it like "Glen Geerie" -- no voiceless velar fricative necessary.

Yes, I noticed both of those, and I would urge people not to treat his pronunciations as gospel. I'm not about to tell Brian Cox he's wrong, mind, but his versions are his, and sometimes not widely shared. If someone I was talking Scotch with pronounced Caol Ila the way he did, I would mentally mark them down as "not knowing as much as they think they do."

Also, Lagavulin is the best. I will brook no dissent.
posted by languagehat at 9:57 AM on October 4, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ohh, that Brian Cox.
posted by Lucien Dark at 10:25 AM on October 4, 2012


But is he a true Scotsman?
posted by The Sprout Queen at 11:59 AM on October 4, 2012


Missing my favorite, The Glenrothes (glen-RAWTH-iss)
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 2:02 PM on October 4, 2012


Scotch is a name for a drink, adhesive tape over in the US and a type of pie.

Don't forget the pancakes or the eggs.
posted by MUD at 2:39 PM on October 4, 2012


I went on a manic Scotch-buying binge several years ago after trying Talisker for the first time. Ended up with many bottles of Laphroaig 10 and 15 year and definitely prefer them to Lagavulin 16. Now I'm broke in some ways but flush with ... too much? Scotch-y goodness. I'm hoping the 15 year (now discontinued) becomes mega-valuable and some third-world dictator buys it from me.
posted by lordaych at 5:12 PM on October 4, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ardbeg Uigeadail is horribly overrated, I really struggle to taste how it got put up s best whisky in the world when it came out, I would genuinely take the standard 10 year Ardbeg over it.

Had you been eating curry before you tried it, or something? If you prefer the basic 10 to the Uigeadail then... then... I am at a loss. Utterly at a loss. The Uigeadail has a complexity and a length that leaves the 10 standing on all fronts. It's a bloody double rainbow of whisky magic in the mouth. It's pretty like drugs and dirty like evil.
posted by Decani at 5:30 PM on October 4, 2012 [3 favorites]


We are referred to either as "Scots" or as "Scottish".

Scotch
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 12:08 AM on October 5, 2012


I showed my Scottish phonetician colleague this thread and he had a couple of observations that I thought I'd share.
"When I was on Islay (which eveyone there pronounced 'eye-lah')"

Because that's the name of the island.

"Caol Ila was universally pronounced 'cull ee-lah' and not like the island itself (and the linked video)."

Caol Ila is a Gaelic, not an English name. Ile (that's I-L-E, if the font isn't distinguishing between the first and second letters, pronounced more or less 'ee-lah') is the name of the island in Gaelic. 'Ila' is an alternative spelling of it. Here's a Gaelic map of Scotland (= Alba) in case anyone's interested.

'Islay' is a fairly spurious anglicised spelling invented by some English speaker who thought there ought to be an 's' in it - well, it's an iSland, isn't it? - but the 'y' on the end is in line with the Scandinavian-origin '-ay' and '-ey' endings you see elsewhere in the Hebrides (e.g. Eriskay, Berneray) and the Northern Isles (e.g. Sanday in the Orkneys, Whalsay in the Shetlands). The Gaelic renderings of these placename elements can be all sorts of things - '-aigh' is a common one - but since the Northern Isles was never a Gaelic-speaking area, they remained with '-ay'/'-ey'. However, Islay was under Scandinavian rule for quite a long time, so it has a good reason for being spelled '-ay'. Like Colonsay and Scalpay, which are close by, but not like Jura and Gigha, which are other neighbouring islands which have lost their 'y'.

"Lay-phroig"

La-FROYK, if you don't mind.

No-one's mentioned Bowmore or Port Charlotte. I wonder why? Too easy to say, probably.
He also added that Ardbeg is by some distance the finest malt produced on the island and his favourite whisky from any part of Scotland.
posted by iamkimiam at 2:15 AM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


I my experience, most people pronounce Bowmore wrong - it's bowMORE, not BOWmore.
posted by Dysk at 5:46 AM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


We missed out on a tour of the Bowmore distillery when we were on Islay (we'll just have to go back, darn it, since we missed about half of the distilleries on the island - stupid bank holidays), but we did stay in the town, and yeah, that's how all the locals pronounced it, with the emphasis on the second syllable. Had the most amazing smoked haddock chowder at a hotel there.
posted by rtha at 6:18 AM on October 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Decani, I got a bottle of the uigedahl on the strength of Murray's bible recommendation and have tried under multiple conditions, I just dont like the taste. I don't think praise for it is universal, other reviewers are less effusive than Murray. I have struggled to give the stuff away! Meanwhile the 10 is for me clean & crisp and a bargain, not my favourite but a top value scotch.
posted by biffa at 2:50 PM on October 6, 2012


No-one's mentioned Bowmore or Port Charlotte.

I mentioned Port Charlotte!
posted by Greg Nog at 12:06 PM on October 8, 2012


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